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Wet Basements

Water Control

At Basement Repair Specialists we fix problems with water entry. There are two ways to control the entry of water into your basement or foundation:

  • The first method is to excavate the exterior foundation walls of the home to the drain tile, add new drain tile, waterproof the foundation wall, and then backfill with clear stone to encourage drainage and reduce hydrostatic pressure on the wall. This method is highly effective and is typically more costly than the alternative.
  • The second method is to install a water control system along the interior perimeter of the home by breaking the concrete floor in the basement, removing it as well as the gravel and soil below it down to the footing, and then installing socked drain tile that leads to either an existing or a new sump pump. This is also highly effective and is often the most economical approach, particularly if the basement is not finished.

At Basement Repair Specialists our interior water control system is second to none! We ALWAYS install the drain tile at the footing, not on top of the footing as some other systems are installed. As one can clearly see, the method we use to control water entry in basements is superior in concept and logic to others that are on the market.

Another Way

The Right Way

Our Water Control Philosophy

Basement Repair Specialists uses “water control” to describe our approach to mitigating moisture problems in basements. We are not original in that regard. “Water control” is the term many reputable contractors use to describe a repair that seeks to move water from against the walls of a foundation to a drain tile system which removes it to daylight, or more commonly, a sump pump. “Water control” is the phrase we use as directly opposed to “waterproofing”—but what’s the difference? In a word, there is normally no difference in a “water control” repair vs. a “waterproofing” repair, but there is a difference in the approach to marketing the repair.

“Waterproofing” is a term that is popular with many contractors because it adds an element of certainty to a repair that if performed correctly will indeed eliminate most water problems in a basement. But neither waterproofing nor water control will guarantee that water will never enter your basement. Think about a river overflowing its banks near a “waterproofed” basement. Clearly water will find its way inside whether through basement windows, cracks in the concrete, or gaps at the top of the wall along the sill plate. Or, if the sewer backs up, water will enter your basement regardless of any repair (please make sure you have sewer backup endorsements on your homeowner’s policy–they are low cost and essential protection). The point is this. There are many contractors that offer certainty where certainty may not be possible. Double lifetime warrantees and waterproof basements sound comforting, but that assurance should be cause for skepticism.

What are you paying for with a warranty that extends out 50 or more years? Very likely, few of the people involved in the transaction will be alive, much less willing to honor agreements made decades ago. Will you really own your home for a double lifetime? Clearly a rhetorical question. Don’t worry. As a company, we stand behind and warranty our work. But more importantly, we believe that a realistic explanation of the likely outcomes of a repair is a more educated and reliable approach than a promise to warranty a waterproof basement for a lifetime. There is a fantastic article by the University of Minnesota Extension regarding water control in basements that can be found here. Our company installs Approach 5 as its normal repair. This is the most costly way to provide water control, but the most effective. Despite the more costly nature of the repair we install, our prices are generally lower than those offering other repairs that lack some of the elements of Approach 5.

If you are fortunately not at the repair stage please note the excellent advice in the article regarding gutters and grading. There are $100 solutions to basement problems, but they require the foresight to ensure water is not gathering at your foundation. Once these basics are neglected, there may be no option but a major repair.

Sump Pumps

At Basement Repair Specialists we only install the finest sump pumps, battery backups, and alarm systems to ensure that the water in your drain tile moves effectively from the perimeter to discharge above grade away well away from your home. Ask one of our knowledgeable professionals about installing or upgrading your sump pump system with the latest energy efficient technologies.